The holiday season is all about making fun memories. Why not create something no one will soon forget at your own ugly sweater party?
Have everyone show up in the tackiest holiday apparel they can find, whether from their closet, at a thrift store or something they “blinged” on their own. With the party attire planned, try these easy and ugly dessert ideas from Wilton:
• Soft, sweet and so ugly cakes: If your guests’ apparel doesn’t grab attention, your cake sure will. Use an ugly sweater cake pan to bake the cake. Style the decorating after your own garment. Use buttercream or fondant, holiday-shaped sprinkles and icing decorations to add some ugly to your cake.
• Cookie decorating fun: Bring the classic seasonal activity to your party by having guests decorate their own sweater cookies. Set up a decorating station with a tacky sweater cookie kit. With 12 pre-baked vanilla cookies, a dozen of your friends can have a blast decorating with the included green and red icing and sprinkles. Set up a photo station so guests can take pictures of their silly cookies to share online.
• Warm up with lattes: Who doesn’t love sipping hot beverages by a warm fire with friends? Brew delicious mocha lattes to toast a merry Christmas. Offer assorted liqueurs for an adults-only party.
• It’s time to judge: At the end of the party, hold a contest for the ugliest sweater — both real and cookie. Award winners in different categories, such as All-Around Ugliest, Most Original, Funniest, Most Non-Ugly or Most Ridiculous. Get creative with the prizes, too. Find an inexpensive and unique white elephant gift, or hand out little first place ribbons.
Peppermint Hot Chocolate Ugly Sweater Cake
makes 10-12 servings
1 package (16.25 ounces) Devil’s Food cake mix
1/4 cup hot cocoa mix
2/3 cup water
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract
Red decorator preferred rolled fondant
White decorator preferred rolled fondant
Primary colored fondant multipack
Sprinkles: sugar pearls, trees, yellow colored sugar
Preheat oven to 325F. Spray the ugly sweater cake pan with vegetable spray. In large bowl, beat cake mix, hot cocoa mix, eggs, water, vegetable oil and peppermint extract with electric mixer at low speed 30 seconds. Scrape bottom and sides of bowl; beat at medium speed 2 minutes.
Pour batter into prepared pan, spreading to even thickness. Bake minutes 44–47 minutes or until toothpick inserted into center of cake comes out clean. Cool in pan on cooling grid 10 minutes. Remove from pan; cool completely on grid.
With spatula, lightly ice cooled cake. Roll out red fondant 1/8 inch thick; cover cake. Knead small amount of white fondant into remaining red fondant, white with small amount of yellow fondant, small amount of yellow fondant with green fondant. Roll out all colors of fondant separately, 1/16 inch thick. Using holiday cutters, patterns or cut free-form, to make collar, ornaments and sweater neckline, cuffs and bottom band. Use piping gel to attach licorice ornament hangers, sprinkles and sugars.
Spirit of the Season Mocha Latte
makes 8 servings
2 cups very hot strong brewed coffee
2 cups Wilton Dark Cocoa Candy Melts Candy
6 cups milk
1/2 cup chocolate syrup
Assorted liqueurs and spirits (optional), such as: peppermint schnapps, Irish cream liqueur, creamy rum liqueur, chocolate-flavored liqueur, cinnamon schnapps, caramel-flavored vodka
In large bowl, pour coffee over dark cocoa Candy Melts candy; let sit to melt. In large microwave safe bowl, heat milk and chocolate syrup until steaming, about 4 minutes. Whisk milk vigorously to froth. Whisk in candy mixture until combined.
Divide lattes evenly between eight mugs. If desired, add 1 ounce of your choice of liqueur to each drink.
Eggnog Ugly Sweater Cake
makes 10-12 servings
1 package (16.5 ounces) yellow cake mix
2/3 cup eggnog
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
Colored icing for easy decorating
Preheat oven to 325F. Spray Ugly Sweater Cake Pan with vegetable spray. In large bowl, beat cake mix, eggnog, oil, eggs and nutmeg with electric mixer at low speed 30 seconds. Scrape bottom and sides of bowl; beat at medium speed 2 minutes. Pour batter into prepared pan, spreading to even thickness.
Bake 39–42 minutes or until toothpick inserted into center of cake comes out clean. Cool in pan on cooling grid 10 minutes. Remove from pan; cool completely on grid.
With spatula, ice cooled cake. Using green icing, pipe a tree on the cake. With red icing, pipe the outline, neckline, sleeve cuffs and bottom sweater band. Attach sprinkles.